Upper Ochlockonee River Report
(Tower Road)

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Report By:  tuck    Date: 5/22/2011 
Rating:Trip Rating     Photos: None     Map & Directions: View

Put in at Tower Rd, approximately 6 mile paddle to take out at Hiway 90 bridge

My Report:

I started out at 8:30, the river being very low, about 11.7 ft at the Havana gauge. The first 2 miles were pretty tough, trying to get through downed trees, some were pullovers, some were pullthoughs and one short portage through the woods for about 50 yds. Within the first mile, the river splits around an island, the main channel going to the east. With the water being so low there was very little flow going to the west, but on an earlier trip with high water levels, the west route is much less difficult. Once past the island, the river deepens and slows down to a crawl, so steady paddling is required. The wildlife was abundant, the usual gators, turtles and birds, but also saw an otter sunning on a log 12 ft off the water. He dropped into the river as soon as I rounded the bend. But I also saw anhingas and a very unusual Yellow-crowned night heron. The water quality seems to be better every time I paddle this river and the presence of these animals, plus lots of mussel shells on the sandbars, seems to indicate to me an encouraging sign of the improving health of the Ocklocknee. The trip took about 5 hours, as I paddled at a leisurely pace. This section of river seems so remote since there are no signs of civilazation, with private land on the west and state forest on the east, its hard to realize the city is so close. On a related note, near the put in at Tower Rd, I past over what I thought was the deck of a submerged boat only 1-2 feet below the surface of the water. I later found out, this may have been the roof of a car (late model Dodge Magnum) which crashed about a year and a half ago.

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Location Data:

Distance (miles): 6
Fees/Costs $: none

Post Date: 5/23/2011

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